Basic estate planning can benefit anyone. It helps ensure that the distribution of your assets follows your wishes upon your death.
Additionally, estate planning dictates who will control your health care and property should you become incapacitated.
Important estate planning documents
Each state has its own inheritance and estate laws, so estate planning should align with regulations in your state. An attorney can assist you in ensuring that you plan your estate according to the requirements in your state of residence. In Texas, it is wise for adults to consider having:
- A will to distribute your assets and name an executor
- A living will (known as an advance directive in Texas) to dictate your wishes if you become unable to make decisions on your own.
- A durable power of attorney to name an individual to oversee your finances if you can no longer do so
- A medical power of attorney to name a person to manage your health care wishes if you become incapacitated
Though probate law in Texas is relatively straightforward, many families would rather avoid probate court proceedings. Bypassing probate court saves grieving loved ones money and aggravation. Probate proceedings involve ascertaining authority to transfer your assets to your heirs and can prolong the process for getting your property to the intended beneficiaries. Living trusts enable people to avoid probate altogether.
Basic estate planning in Texas can make life easier for your loved ones should you pass away or become unable to make decisions on your own. An experienced attorney can help you create an estate plan that works for you.